Hurley (stick)

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Hurley, with sliotar Hurling Ball and Hurley.JPG
Hurley, with sliotar

A hurley or hurl or hurling stick (Irish: camán) is a wooden stick used in the Irish sports of hurling and camogie. [1] It typically measures between 45 and 96 cm (18 to 38 inches) long with a flattened, curved bas at the end. The bas (which is less than 13cm in width at its widest point) is used to strike a leather sliotar ball. [2]

Contents

Overview

The bas and neck of a broken hurley lies upon the grass Cracked and splintered hurley.jpg
The bas and neck of a broken hurley lies upon the grass

Hurleys are made from ash wood; the base of the tree near the root is the only part used and is usually bought from local craftsmen in Ireland (for about 20–50 euro), who still use traditional production methods. However, for some time in the 1970s, hurleys made from plastic were used, mainly produced by Wavin. These proved more likely to cause injury, however, and were phased out. As of 2012, at least one manufacturer was producing synthetic hurleys approved for use by the GAA. [3] On wooden hurleys, steel bands are used to reinforce the flattened end - though these are not permitted in camogie due to increased risk of injury. Bands have been put on hurleys since the beginning; the 8th century Brehon Laws permit only a king's son to have a bronze band, while all others must use a copper band.

No matter how well crafted the hurley is, a hurler may well expect to use several hurleys over the course of the hurling season. The hurleys often break if two collide in the course of a game, or occasionally they break off on the other players (arms, legs, etc.). Two hurleys colliding is colloquially known as "the clash of the ash", a poetic description that has come to be used as a romantic or poetic synonym for the game itself. Some hurleys can be repaired by a method called "splicing". This method involves cutting a bas-shaped piece from another broken hurley and fixing it to the broken bas by way of glue and nails; the two-piece bas is then banded ("hooped") and sanded into shape. (The face of the hurley is called the bas, and is the area used to strike the ball.) Throwing the hurley (e.g., to block a ball going high over one's head) is illegal, though camogie players may drop it to make a handpass.

There are names associated with different parts of the hurley. The "bas" is the rounded end of the hurley where the sliotar makes contact as it is being struck. At the same end the "heel" of the hurley is the area to the left of the band and at the hurley's edge. It is used to give height to a ball struck on the ground. The rounded area to the right of the band is the "toe" of the hurley and is used in the roll lift or jab lift techniques which allow a player to gain legal possession of a ball into the hand from the ground. The handle is at the opposite end of the hurley to the bas, with the timber cut to form a small lip at the peak (to prevent the hurley from slipping from the player's hand). The handle is typically wrapped with a self-adhesive synthetic foam grip or tape.

When selecting a hurley, choosing the correct size is very important as a hurley that is the incorrect length can be difficult to swing correctly. A correctly sized hurley should be just touching the ground when gripped at the top and held parallel to the player's leg with their arms relaxed. [4] [5] [6] [7] Traditionally it was recommended that the toe of the hurley should reach the player's hip when the heel of the hurley is placed on the ground and held parallel to the player's leg. This has proved inaccurate and unsuitable since two players of the same height can have a difference of 4 inches or 10 centimetres in hip height. [8]

As a gift

The hurley is often given as a gift to or between politicians; for example, Mary McAleese was given two when she was awarded the freedom of Kilkenny in 2009, [9] and Barack Obama was given one by Enda Kenny on his visit to Ireland in 2011. [10] [11] Prince Philip was also given a hurley and sliotar as a gift during Queen Elizabeth II's visit to Ireland. [12]

Jason Statham used a hurley as a weapon in the opening scene of the 2011 film Blitz .

Related Research Articles

Hurling Outdoor team stick and ball game

Hurling is an outdoor team game of ancient Gaelic Irish origin, played by men. One of Ireland's native Gaelic games, it shares a number of features with Gaelic football, such as the field and goals, the number of players, and much terminology. There is a similar game for women called camogie. It shares a common Gaelic root with the sport of shinty, which is played predominantly in Scotland.

Camogie Irish stick-and-ball team sport played by women

Camogie is an Irish stick-and-ball team sport played by women. Camogie is played by 100,000 women in Ireland and worldwide, largely among Irish communities.

Sliotar

A sliotar or sliothar is a hard solid sphere slightly larger than a tennis ball, consisting of a cork core covered by two pieces of leather stitched together. Sometimes called a "hurling ball", it resembles a baseball with more pronounced stitching. It is used in the Gaelic games of hurling, camogie, rounders and shinty.

Gaelic games Set of sports originating, and mainly played, on the island of Ireland

Gaelic games are sports played in Ireland under the auspices of the Gaelic Athletic Association (GAA). They include Gaelic football, hurling, Gaelic handball and rounders. Women's versions of hurling and football are also played: camogie, organised by the Camogie Association of Ireland, and ladies' Gaelic football, organised by the Ladies' Gaelic Football Association. While women's versions are not organised by the GAA, they are closely associated with it.

Antrim GAA Governing body of Gaelic games in Ireland

The Antrim County Board of the Gaelic Athletic Association or Antrim GAA is one of the 32 county boards of the GAA in Ireland, and is responsible for Gaelic games in County Antrim. The county board is also responsible for the Antrim county teams.

Dublin GAA County board of the Gaelic Athletic Association in Ireland

The Dublin County Board of the Gaelic Athletic Association (GAA) or Dublin GAA is one of the 32 county boards of the GAA in Ireland, and is responsible for Gaelic games in the Dublin Region and the Dublin county teams. The teams and their fans are known as "The Dubs" or "Boys in Blue". The fans have a special affiliation with the Hill 16 end of Croke Park.

Clare GAA county board of the Gaelic Athletic Association in Ireland

The Clare County Board of the Gaelic Athletic Association (GAA) or Clare GAA is one of the 32 county boards of the GAA in Ireland, and is responsible for Gaelic games in County Clare. Clare plays its home games at Cusack Park in Ennis.

Tipperary GAA county board of the Gaelic Athletic Association in Ireland

The Tipperary County Board of the Gaelic Athletic Association (GAA) or Tipperary GAA is one of the 32 county boards of the GAA in Ireland, and is responsible for Gaelic games in County Tipperary and the Tipperary county teams.

Louth GAA county board of the Gaelic Athletic Association in Ireland

The Louth County Board of the Gaelic Athletic Association (GAA) or Louth GAA is one of the 32 county boards of the GAA in Ireland, and is responsible for Gaelic games in County Louth. The county board is also responsible for the Louth county teams.

Meath GAA county board of the Gaelic Athletic Association in Ireland

The Meath County Board of the Gaelic Athletic Association (GAA) or Meath GAA is one of the 32 county boards of the GAA in Ireland, and is responsible for Gaelic games in County Meath, as well as for Meath county teams.

Westmeath GAA county board of the Gaelic Athletic Association in Ireland

The Westmeath County Board of the Gaelic Athletic Association (GAA) or Westmeath GAA is one of the 32 county boards of the GAA in Ireland, and is responsible for Gaelic games in County Westmeath. The county board is also responsible for the Westmeath county teams.

Wexford GAA county board of the Gaelic Athletic Association in Ireland

The Wexford County Board of the Gaelic Athletic Association (GAA) or Wexford GAA is one of the 32 county boards of the GAA in Ireland, and is responsible for Gaelic games in County Wexford. The county board is also responsible for the Wexford county teams.

Leitrim GAA county board of the Gaelic Athletic Association in Ireland

The Leitrim County Board of the Gaelic Athletic Association (GAA) or Leitrim GAA is one of the 32 county boards of the GAA in Ireland, and is responsible for Gaelic games in County Leitrim. The county board is also responsible for the Leitrim co"Connacht's traditional minnows" and "one of the GAA's Cinderella counties", Leitrim are never considered seriously as likely to win a major title. The county football team play in the Connacht Senior Football Championship and compete in Division 3 of the National Football League. They have won the Connacht Senior Football Championship on two occasions, the first in 1927 and their second in 1994. Leitrim have created a significant impact on GAA history.

The All-Ireland Poc Fada Hurling & Camogie Championships is an annual tournament testing the skills of Ireland's best hurlers and camogie players. Poc Fada is Irish for "long puck". The championships are sponsored by Martin Donnelly.

Dual player or dual star is a term used in Irish English to describe someone who competes in multiple sports - for example in Victorian Ireland cricket and hurling. The term today in Gaelic games typically describes a male player who plays both Gaelic football and hurling or, if a female player, a player of ladies' Gaelic football and camogie. The player does not necessarily have to play at the same standard in both sports. The number of dual stars at county level has decreased recently due to the increasing demands placed upon the best players of both sports.

The following is an alphabetical list of terms and jargon used in relation to Gaelic games. See also list of Irish county nicknames

Padraig Pearses GAA Roscommon Irish sports club

Padraig Pearses GAA Club is a Gaelic Athletic Association club located in the parishes of Moore, Taughmaconnell and Rural Creagh in South County Roscommon, Ireland. They play in Red and White colours and their home pitch is at Woodmount, Creagh.

Scoring in Gaelic games

This page discusses scoring in the Gaelic games of hurling, Gaelic football, camogie, ladies' Gaelic football, international rules football and shinty-hurling.

Ash guard

An ash guard, ashguard or hurling glove is a fingerless protective glove used in the Gaelic sports of hurling and camogie, principally played in Ireland.

Impact of the COVID-19 pandemic on Gaelic games Global impact of the COVID-19 pandemic on Gaelic games

As with other sports, the COVID-19 pandemic has caused disruption to Gaelic games, primarily in Ireland but also elsewhere in the world. Competitions have been cancelled, postponed or restructured, while some teams have withdrawn or been unable to participate in those that have gone ahead.

References

    • "POLL: Is it a 'hurl' or a 'hurley'?". rte.ie. RTÉ. 8 August 2019. Retrieved 4 March 2020.
    • "Hurley or a hurl? The great debate rages once more". irishtimes.com. Irish Times. 9 August 2019. Retrieved 4 March 2020.
    • "Hurling Sticks". thegaastore.com. Retrieved 4 March 2020.
    • Hurl or hurley? 22 of 32 counties say hurl The Irish Times, 2020-11-12.
  1. GAA Official Guide - Part 2 - Containing Playing Rules of Hurling and Football (PDF) (Report). Gaelic Athletic Association. May 2019. p. 16. 4.5 The bas of a hurley at its widest point shall not be more than 13cm
  2. "Cúltec is on the ball as synthetic hurley strikes the right balance". irishexaminer.com. Irish Examiner. 30 July 2012. Retrieved 4 March 2020.
  3. "How to Measure the Correct Hurley Size". cultec.ie. Retrieved 4 March 2020.
  4. http://www.lashgoleor.ie/hurls_for_sale/measurement_guide.html [ dead link ]
  5. "Hurley Measurement Guide - How to pick the right size". Curran Hurling. Retrieved 4 March 2020.
  6. "What Size Hurley Should You Use?". midletongaa.com. Midleton GAA Club. Retrieved 4 March 2020.
  7. "Measure Up For Correct Hurley Size". Faughs.ie. Faughs GAA Club. Retrieved 4 March 2020.
  8. "Cool Cat Mary hopes to capture Kilkenny magic". Irish Independent . 20 May 2009. Retrieved 21 December 2009.
  9. "Obama has fun in Ireland". bbc.co.uk. BBC News. 23 May 2011.
  10. "Obama reaffirms US-Irish ties during visit". aljazeera.net. May 2011.
  11. "Croke Park: Queen in emotionally charged visit". bbc.com. BBC News. 18 May 2011. Retrieved 4 March 2020.